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Investigating Environmental Legislation
Letters to Local and State Legislators
- Grade level: Upper elementary and middle school.
- Subject Area: Science and social studies.
Students send letters to their local and state legislators critiquing
their voting record on environmental issues and sharing their own views on these important issues.
- Locate their local or state legislator's address - postal or e-mail.
- Practice writing skills by crafting a letter to one of their legislators.
- Participate in the democratic process by sharing their views with local politicians.
Materials and Resources
In developing our lessons and activities, we made some
assumptions about the hardware
and software that would be available in the classroom for teachers who visit the
LETSNet Website. We assume that teachers using our Internet-based lessons or
activities have a computer
(PC or Macintosh) with the necessary hardware components (mouse, keyboard, and
monitor) as well as software (operating system, TCP/IP software, networking or
software, e-mail and a World Wide Web client program, preferably Netscape, but
Mosaic or Lynx). In the section below, we specify any "special"
requirements for a lesson or activity (in addition to those described above)
and the level of Internet access required to do the activity.
Special hardware requirements: none.
Special software requirements: none.
Internet access: low-speed (less than 28,800 BPS via phone).
- Students work in groups or pairs to craft a letter to one of their representatives critiquing their voting
record on environmental issues of interest to the students. Encourage students to formulate these letters with
a beginning, middle, and end, and to include relevant information from the research they did on these representatives in prior lessons. Students should use resources they gathered from their Internet research to support the positions they take in their letters.
- Use the Web resources below to gather e-mail address information. If Internet access is not available, use the local phone book
or other printed resources to get the street address and phone number.
- Students contact their state or local representatives by e-mail, by regular mail, or by phone using information
from the Web resources below.
- Encourage students to continue following the voting record of their local and state legislators on environmental issues,
and communicating with them on a regular basis about their views.
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